Accor Group has signed an agreement to sell for US$ 465 million its entire 50% interest in Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) to Carlson Companies and One Equity Partners LLC (OEP), a private equity affiliate of JPMorgan Chase & Co. Accor Group and Carlson Companies had each owned a 50% interest in CWT since 1997.
As part of the transaction, Accor and CWT have signed a three-year, renewable strategic partnership designed to secure preferred distribution of Accor hotels by CWT. At the same time, Accor has confirmed CWT as the Group’s preferred travel agency.
Following the disposal, Carlson Companies will own 55% of CWT and OEP 45%. Among other things, the transaction is subject to regulatory approval by European and US competition authorities, expected in the next few weeks.
“This divestment,” said Gilles Pelisson, “is the first step to the refocusing on our two core businesses: hotels and services. It is perfectly aligned with the new strategic direction announced by the Group”.
With 168,000 employees in 140 countries, Accor is the European leader and one of the world’s largest groups in travel, tourism and corporate services, with two major international activities:
- Hotels with the Sofitel, Novotel, Mercure, Suitehotel, Ibis, Etap Hotel, Formule 1, Motel 6 and Red Rood Inn brands: over 4,000 hotels and 470,000 rooms in 90 countries, as well as other businesses (restaurants notably Lenotre, casinos and travel agencies) ;
- Services to corporate clients and public institutions: 21 million people in 35 countries use a broad range of services (food vouchers, people care and services, incentive, loyalty programs) engineered and managed by Accor Services.